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Hidden Brain

Science Podcasts

Shankar Vedantam uses science and storytelling to reveal the unconscious patterns that drive human behavior, shape our choices and direct our relationships.

Shankar Vedantam uses science and storytelling to reveal the unconscious patterns that drive human behavior, shape our choices and direct our relationships.

Location:

United States

Description:

Shankar Vedantam uses science and storytelling to reveal the unconscious patterns that drive human behavior, shape our choices and direct our relationships.

Language:

English

Contact:

1111 North Capitol St NE Washington, DC 20002


Episodes

Taking Control of Your Time

9/26/2022
Many of us feel like there aren't enough hours in the day. We struggle to make time for all the competing demands at work and at home, and inevitably feel like we're letting someone down. But what if there were a way to reclaim our time and, as a result, get more joy out of our lives? This week, psychologist Cassie Mogilner Holmes explains how we've fallen victim to the illusion of time scarcity, and what we can do to spend our time more wisely. Did you catch last week's episode about how...

Duration:00:50:10

How to Really Know Another Person

9/19/2022
So often, we think we know what other people are thinking. But researchers have found that our attempts at reading other people go wrong more often than we realize. This week, we talk with psychologist Tessa West about what we can all do to read people more accurately. If you like today's show, be sure to check out last week's conversation about emotions, and how they're shaped by where we live. And if you'd like to support our work, you can do so at support.hiddenbrain.org.

Duration:00:57:00

Decoding Emotions

9/12/2022
We like to think that all humans are born with the same core emotions: anger, fear, joy, sadness and disgust. But what if that's not true? This week, psychologist Batja Mesquita offers a different model of emotions — one that can help us to better understand our own feelings and those of the people around us. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode on how technology and psychology can be used to radically transform our approach to crime. And...

Duration:00:54:40

Making the World a Safer Place

9/5/2022
All of us want to feel safe in our daily lives. Yet when we think about crime, our first response is often a blanket approach: find the bad guys, and punish them. But what if there were another way? This week on the show, researchers Sara Heller and Chris Blattman explore how technology and psychology can be used to radically transform our approach to crime. Don't forget to check out the episodes in this year's You 2.0 series, including last week's conversation with Adam Grant about how to...

Duration:00:50:45

You 2.0: How to Open Your Mind

8/29/2022
In the United States, we often praise people with strong convictions, and look down on those who express doubt or hesitation. In this favorite 2021 episode, psychologist Adam Grant pushes back against the benefits of certainty, and describes the magic that unfolds when we challenge our own deeply-held beliefs. Don't forget to check out the other episodes in our You 2.0 series, including last week's show on how to overcome stage fright. Also, if you'd like to support our work, you can do so...

Duration:00:52:40

You 2.0: Overcoming Stage Fright

8/22/2022
The pressure. The expectations. The anxiety. If there’s one thing that many of us have in common, it’s the stress that can come from performing in front of others. In this week’s episode, we revisit our 2021 conversation with cognitive scientist Sian Beilock about why so many of us crumble under pressure — and what we can do about it. Don't forget to check out the other episodes in our You 2.0 series, including last week's show about how we can harness our sight to achieve our goals. Also,...

Duration:00:56:35

You 2.0: The Mind's Eye

8/15/2022
Some challenges can feel insurmountable. But psychologist Emily Balcetis says the solutions are often right in front of our eyes. This week, as part of our annual series on personal growth and reinvention, we revisit a favorite 2020 conversation about how we can harness our sight to achieve our goals. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about how to make peace with your negative inner voice. Also, if you'd like to support our work, you...

Duration:00:51:46

You 2.0: How To See Yourself Clearly

8/8/2022
How well do we know ourselves? Maybe the better question to ask is how well can we truly know ourselves? Psychologist Tim Wilson says introspection only gets us so far, and that we often make important decisions in life and love for reasons we don't even realize. But he says there are some simple ways to improve our self-knowledge. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our two recent episodes on how our mindsets shape our lives in subtle but profound ways....

Duration:00:50:04

You 2.0: Befriending Your Inner Voice

8/1/2022
You know that negative voice that goes round and round in your head, keeping you up at night? When that negative inner voice gets switched on, it's hard to think about anything else. Psychologist Ethan Kross has a name for it: chatter. He says it's part of the human condition, but there are ways to keep our negative emotions from morphing into chatter. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our two recent episodes on how our mindsets shape our lives in subtle...

Duration:00:53:25

Reframing Your Reality: Part 2

7/25/2022
We often assume that we see ourselves and the world around us accurately. But psychologist Alia Crum says that our perceptions are always filtered through our mindsets — and these mindsets shape our lives in subtle but profound ways. In the second of two episodes, Alia explains how our beliefs about food and exercise affect our bodies. If you haven't yet listened to our first episode about mindsets, you can find it here. And if you'd like to support our work, you can do so at...

Duration:00:52:00

Reframing Your Reality: Part 1

7/18/2022
We often assume that we see ourselves and the world around us accurately. But psychologist Alia Crum says that our perceptions are always filtered through our mindsets — and these mindsets shape our lives in subtle but profound ways. In the first of two episodes, Alia explains how mindsets affect our response to stress. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about how group identities can affect our behavior. And if you'd like to support our...

Duration:00:49:08

Separating Yourself from the Pack

7/11/2022
Have you ever gotten into a heated argument about politics? Maybe you’ve said something you're not proud of during game night with friends, or booed the opposing team at a sporting event. Psychologist Mina Cikara studies what happens in these moments — when our mindset shifts from “you and me” to “us and them.” This week on the show, Mina shares the profound ways that becoming a part of a group shapes our thoughts, feelings and behaviors. If you like this show, be sure to check out our...

Duration:00:54:47

What We Gain from Pain

7/4/2022
We've all heard the saying, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." But is there any truth to this idea? This week, we explore the concept of post-traumatic growth with psychologist Eranda Jayawickreme. He finds that suffering can have benefits — but not necessarily the ones we expect. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about how we define intelligence. Also, check out our new podcast, My Unsung Hero! And if you'd like to support...

Duration:00:50:17

A Founding Contradiction

6/27/2022
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." Those words, penned by Thomas Jefferson 246 years ago, continue to inspire many Americans. And yet they were written by a man who owned hundreds of enslaved people, and fathered six children by an enslaved woman. This week, as we prepare to mark Independence Day in the United States, we revisit our 2018 conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed. We talk about the contradictions in...

Duration:00:51:00

The Premonition

6/20/2022
When Paul Burnham was a teenager, he received what felt like a premonition: he would die at the age of 54. Now, he's 54. This week, what his story of confronting death reveals about life. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about the power of doing less. Also, check out our new podcast, My Unsung Hero! And if you'd like to support our work, you can do so at support.hiddenbrain.org.

Duration:00:49:36

Why You're Smarter Than You Think

6/13/2022
From the time we are schoolchildren, we are ranked and sorted based on how smart we are. But what if our assumptions about intelligence limit our potential? This week, psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman proposes a more expansive notion of what it means to be "smart." If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about the power of subtraction. Also, check out our new podcast, My Unsung Hero! And if you'd like to support our work, you can do so at...

Duration:00:53:57

Do Less

6/6/2022
The human drive to invent new things has led to pathbreaking achievements in medicine, science and society. But our desire for innovation can keep us from seeing one of the most powerful paths to progress: subtraction. Engineer Leidy Klotz says sometimes the best way forward involves removing, streamlining and simplifying things. If you like this show, be sure to check out our other work, including our recent episode about the psychological traps we fall into when it comes to money. Also,...

Duration:00:58:09

Money 2.0: Let's Go Shopping!

5/30/2022
What do the things you buy say about you? Many of us like to think of ourselves as immune to slick advertising and celebrity endorsements. But like it or not, we're communicating messages about ourselves every day with the clothes we wear, the cars we drive, and the products we use. In the final installment of our Money 2.0 series, we revisit favorite conversations with Americus Reed and Neeru Paharia. We'll consider how companies create a worldview around the products they sell, and then...

Duration:00:48:48

Money 2.0: The Rich and the Rest of Us

5/23/2022
Where do you stand on the income ladder? Do you think of yourself as rich, as poor, or as somewhere in between? Our perceptions of wealth — our own, and other people's — can affect us more profoundly than we realize. This week in our Money 2.0 series, we revisit two of our favorite conversations about wealth and inequality. Sociologist Brook Harrington takes us inside the lives of the über wealthy and the people who manage their fortunes. Then, psychologist Keith Payne shares surprising...

Duration:00:53:05

Money 2.0: Emotional Currency

5/16/2022
What’s the point of money? The answer might seem obvious: we need it to get paid for our work and to buy the things we need. But there’s also a deeper way to look at the role of money in our lives. This week in our Money 2.0 series, we revisit a favorite 2020 episode for an anthropologist’s take on the origin story of money. What if the cash and coins we carry are not just tools for transactions, but manifestations of human relationships? If you like this show, be sure to listen to last...

Duration:00:39:53